On June 21st, the Potomac Institute hosted Michael Mehlberg of Rambus, Inc. A growing avenue for gaining sensitive information from chips is the class of side channel attacks.  Attackers use available indirect signals, e.g. timing information and power consumption, from a chip to decipher cryptographic keys and/or learn other information being transmitted within the system being attacked.  Mr.Mehlbergdemonstrated how secret cryptography keys can be extracted from a mobile phone and FPGA by measuring the power consumption of those devices during decryption; an exploit publicly discovered by Cryptography Research in the late ‘90s.

MikeMehlbergleads the Business Development for Government and Defense at the Security Division and Cryptography Products Group for Rambus, Inc. in the Washington DC area. He has a bachelor of Computer Science from Purdue University and 15 years of experience securing weapons systems from tampering and reverse engineering exploits.

To view a demonstration of a side channel attack similar to the attack demonstrated by Mr. Mehlberg, please click 


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The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies is an independent, 501(c)(3), not-for-profit public policy research institute. The Institute identifies and aggressively shepherds discussion on key science and technology issues facing our society. From these discussions and forums, we develop meaningful science and technology policy options and ensure their implementation at the intersection of business and government.


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